Cool Weather Helps Ease Fire Restrictions Across Region

Northern Rockies Coordination Center announced Tuesday that all fire restrictions were rescinded across Northwest Montana

By Justin Franz

Rain and even snow in some areas have put a damper on wildfires across the region and fire restrictions are being eased on most federal and state lands.

On Tuesday, the Northern Rockies Coordination Group announced all stage I and II restrictions had been rescinded on the Flathead and Kootenai national forests, Glacier National Park, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service land, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks and in Lake, Lincoln and Sanders counties. The Flathead County Commission was expected to meet this week to decide if fire restrictions would be eased locally as well.

Even though cool weather over the Labor Day weekend calmed fires, officials warned that the fire season may not be over should warm temperatures return.

“Please remember that even though fire restrictions have been rescinded fire season is still active,” coordination group officials wrote in a press release. “There are many fires burning in the area so you may still see more flames within fire areas.”

Although restrictions were lifted, some areas of the Flathead and Kootenai national forests remained closed. Most evacuation orders across the region have been lifted, including ones in Essex, Heart Butte and Libby. Residents between Noxon and Troy, along Montana Highway 56 have also been allowed to return home, but are still under a pre-evacuation notice.

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